April 16, 2006 at 12:11 am #11916Born2BMildParticipant
The 2006 Isle of Man TT Races are set to be among the most exciting of recent years, with a quality line-up of international riders and factory teams showing a renewed interest in the world famous event.
The entry list is headed by current lap record holder John McGuinness, who will be aboard an HM Plant Honda similar to those ridden by Ryuichi Kiyonari and Karl Harris in the British Superbike Championship.
The Stobart Honda team will be represented by Welsh veteran Ian Lougher and Hawk Kawasaki make their Island bow with another experienced Mountain Course campaigner, Carl Rennie, in the saddle.
TAS Suzuki, who have enjoyed numerous road race successes in recent years, will again be on the grid and New Zealander Bruce Anstey and new recruit Ryan Farquhar provide them them with a good chance of adding to their tally.
The Yamaha challenge will be spearheaded by Lincolnshire’s Guy Martin, who will hope to build on his first podium finish when he rides for the AIM Yamaha team.
Manx based Welsh competitor Jason Griffiths and Raymond Porter from the Republic of Ireland will also campaign Yamaha machinery.
Adrian Archibald, three times a winner on the Mountain Course, will represent the Japanese manufacturer under the Team Racing banner.
Martin Finnegan, who became the fastest Irish competitor ever around the gruelling 37.75-mile course last year, will compete in the colours of Team Klaffi Honda, who regularly take part at World Superbike level.
Yorkshireman Ian Hutchinson will carry the flag for Kawaski with McAdoo Racing while top privateer team Uel Duncan Racing field Australian Cameron Donald and Scot Les Shand on Hondas in all the solo classes.
Rob Frost, a veteran of the British Championship scene, will be aboard CD Racing machinery and among the newcomers are American AMA Superbike aces Mark Miller and Jeremy Toye and British Superstock aces Conor Cummins and James Edmeades.
The famous Dunlop name will again be represented on the start line after an absence of one year.
William, son of Robert, and nephew of 26-times winner Joey, has shown the potential to continue the successful family tradition, and will take in the Supersport class.
Japanese rider Jun Maeda, who moved onto a leaderboard position last year, will add to the international flavour of the event.
With circuit knowledge all important in this ultimate road race challenge, Manx competitors such as Chris Palmer, John Barton, Paul Hunt, Chris Heath, Gary Carswell and Nigel Beattie should also make a big impression.
The entry for the two sidecar races is headed by Dave Molyneux, with Nick Crowe and Steve Norbury likely to be his nearest challengers.
Practising for the Isle of Man TT Races begins on Saturday 27 May, with the first race being held on Saturday 3 June.
There will be four solo races, with classes for Superbikes, Superstocks and Supersports, plus the blue riband event, the Senior TT.
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